OJJ seeks to deny attorneys’ push for more access and information on youth conditions in Angola
The state is attempting to deny advocates from seeking information about the conditions and services being provided to the kids held in the Angola facility. This denial of access is a pattern of behavior from OJJ. Aaron Clark Rizzio, LCCR Co-Executive director states “All of our clients and their families understand the message that OJJ intends to send to them, and they feel it deeply. The children in there feel as if they’re being thrown away, being put in the worst place possible, and being given up on.” Read the full article here
Sending children to Angola increases chances of recidivism
New Orleans pediatric physicians join in the recent op-ed by Demario Davis and Malcolm Jenkins to strongly oppose the relocation of our youth from juvenile detention facilities to Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. Security issues that led to this decision aren’t the fault of the children; they should be given the opportunity to rehabilitate, not be sent to a maximum-security facility designed for adult incarceration. Read the full op-ed by Maya Jones, a pediatric emergency physician, and Jessica Zagory, a pediatric surgeon here
CJ McCollum: Public safety and criminal justice reform go hand in hand
CJ McCollum, New Orleans Pelican, has penned an op-ed that plainly states: “Public safety and criminal justice reform are not mutually exclusive”.  This op-ed highlights the critical juvenile justice advocacy efforts done by Louisiana Center for Children’s Rights. Read his full op-ed here
Pelican Institute for Public Policy, new report recommends smart-on-crime policies that increase public safety and reduce the revolving door in and out of prison.
“Public safety reform is too important not to get right,” and “Decisions should be grounded in facts and data, and reforms should reflect proven policy that increases public safety, reduces crime, and makes the best use of scarce tax-payer dollars. Pelican Institute CEO Daniel Erspamer said in a press release. Read more here
Everyday Violence Against Children
The criminal punishment system targets poor children and children of color for the harshest treatment without addressing the root causes of crime. Malcolm Lloyd, a former juvenile investigator for the Orleans Public Defenders office writes a powerful piece on the modern history of the juvenile justice system and how it has failed our children, and what can be done to change it for the better. Read his powerful piece here
Why the Missouri Model?
U.S. District Court Judge Shelly Dick issued a ruling that will allow Louisiana to move forward with its proposed plan to house adjudicated youth in a facility on the grounds of the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. This decision contradicts everything we know about youth facilities. As the former director of the Missouri Division of Youth Services for over 17 years, with more than 40 years of experience in juvenile justice, I know firsthand that safety in juvenile facilities can only be achieved by providing rehabilitation in a therapeutic environment. Read more here
Malcolm Jenkins and Demario Davis: Children shouldn’t be punished for Louisiana’s failings
Louisiana has failed the children in its care in the Office of Juvenile Justice facilities and is planning to punish those children for its failings. The state’s plan to move children to the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola will exacerbate the harms to those children and make Louisiana less safe. Malcolm Jenkins, a former New Orleans Saint, activist, entrepreneur, and co-founder of Players Coalition, and Demario Davis, an All-Pro linebacker for the New Orleans Saints, writes a powerful Op-ed. Read the full Op-ed here.
How The COVID-19 Pandemic Is Impacting Special Education Access.
When the COVID-19 pandemic forced schools around the country to close in March 2020, children incarcerated in secure care facilities in Louisiana were left without any educational services for months. Many of LCCR’s clients were affected by this crisis, and they experienced significant learning loss and isolation as a result of educational gaps.  Students with disabilities in the custody of the Office of Juvenile Justice (OJJ) were most affected by the educational disruption caused by the pandemic. These vulnerable students are significantly overrepresented in OJJ custody in Louisiana. According to one study conducted by the Coalition for Juvenile Justice, up […]
Abolishing Juvenile Life Without Parole
Louis Gibson isn’t taking his second chance for granted. After being sentenced as a child to die in prison, he’s living a life he didn’t think was possible just a few years ago.
Three LCCR Alumni Vying to Reshape New Orleans' Judiciary
The election on November 3 will be unlike any New Orleans residents have seen before. An unprecedented number of current and former public defenders are on the ballot vying for judicial seats. These positions are often filled by prosecutors, which unfortunately means that few judges have worked with defendants or have witnessed firsthand their experiences with the system. It is rare for public defenders to run in judicial races, but that is changing this year across the country and right here in New Orleans.  Of the seven public defense attorneys who are running, three in particular have deep ties to […]